Before playing Simone Bryant, best pal to Jessica Marais's Lily Woodward in the Aussie drama The Wrong Girl, Hayley Magnus made a brief appearance on Home and Away. Now based away in Los Angeles with fiancé David Jacob Kramer, the 28-year-old Best New Talent Logie nominee tells WHO about life abroad, her obsession with books and what it means to still call Australia home.
Q: How is it, as an actress, playing an actress like Simone Bryant on The Wrong Girl?
A: I adore playing Simone, it’s so much fun. She really has very little filter which is so liberating. I say the most inappropriate things and I love it. They can’t blame me for saying something incredibly rude — I just blame Simone. It’s the best alibi. We're pretty different, [but] I love clothes and obviously Simone is a very eccentric dresser. So I share that with her. I also like to think I’m a very loyal friend and I think Simone has that in spades.
Q: Despite their differences, Lily (Jessica Marais) and Simone make a solid pair. What are your friendships like?
A: I am pretty similar to my best friends actually, although some of my friends really like going out and I really like not going out. I just like to be indoors. If the sun goes down, I just like to me inside. I much prefer to be at home.
Q: Speaking of home, you have quite a collection of books. Your Instagram feed is filled with recommendations.
A: At home, I have a lot of books, a lot of plants and not much else. They aren’t the easiest things to move with. They’re heavy and cumbersome, but I love my books. We have a lot of art books in our house and we have this whole ceremony of having to put things over the spines so they don’t get faded but quickly remove them all when people come over.
Q: You share that house with your now fiancé, David Jacob Kramer. When did you meet?
A: We met three years ago at a wedding in Sydney and I was about to move to LA. We sat opposite each other and he said, "I live in LA." I said, "I’m moving there next week," and we’ve been together ever since. He’s from Sydney. He is an Australian, but he has been there for about 12 years.
Q: What’s the story behind your engagement ring?
A: He knew that I wasn’t so into diamonds, so him and his sister, a jewellery designer, designed the most unbelievable black opal ring. It changes colours all the time — it's magical, and I say the ring is moody so our relationship doesn’t have to be [Laughs]!
Q: You were a Logie nominee this year up against your co-star Rob Collins (Jack Winter), who won.
A: I was so surprised to be nominated, and it was really nice to be recognised, but when Rob won, there was nothing but genuine happiness. A win for him is a win for all of us.
Q: What’s next after The Wrong Girl?
A: Just before I came back to Australia [to film the show], I finished a series for FX and another film in the US, but I’m a sucker for a good script and an interesting character, so I’m looking forward to auditioning again. I really love the idea of playing characters that are often seen as bad or evil, but then I also like the idea of playing a fairy princess who rides a caterpillar!
Q: Do you have any plans to move back to Australia permanently?
A: I still call Australia home, but not at this stage. It’s been a lovely thing being able to work on The Wrong Girl as it brings me back. I do miss a lamington and a perfect cup of tea!
To hear more from Hayley, pick up the latest issue of WHO on newsstands today.